Reinsurance Law Blog

Reinsurance Law Blog

Tag Archives: coverage

Breach of notification provision, failure to give insurance company prompt notice voids coverage — 8th Circuit, Arkansas

Posted in Contractual Liability
In American Railcar Industries v. Hartford Insurance Company, Tedder, American Railcar’s employee, was hurt while on a break at work.  Tedder sought workers compensation coverage for the claim, which was eventually denied by the Arkansas Workers’ Compensation Commission.  Then, Tedder filed a civil tort action against American Railcar (ARI) in federal court. ARI did not… Continue Reading

Homeowners policy did not cover privacy, negligence claims where there was no physical injury to person or property — 10th Circuit, Oklahoma law

Posted in Contractual Liability, Duty to Defend
In State Farm Fire v. Dawson, Dawson was sued for negligence and privacy violations after receiving inappropriate photos of an under aged student. Dawson wanted State Farm to pay his defense and any judgment.  But State Farm claimed there was no physical injury to tangible property and no bodily injury such that the policy did… Continue Reading

Misrepresentations in insurance application let insurer off the hook for fatal building collapse — Pennsylvania

Posted in Contractual Liability
In Berkely Assurance Company vs Campbell, Campbell was hired to demolish a building in Philadelphia.  During the demolition, an unbraced wall fell onto an adjacent Salvation Army store killing and injuring employees and customers. Berkely issued a policy to Campbell, but claimed it was void because of misrepresentations in the application and because Campbell failed… Continue Reading

Habitation or vacancy clause in homeowner’s policy conditions section is an exclusion — Arkansas

Posted in Contractual Liability
In Farm Bureau v. Davenport, 2017 Ark. App. 207, Davenport had 2 houses, one in Michigan and one in Arkansas.  While at the Michigan house, the Arkansas house was broken into and set on fire.  Farm Bureau denied the claim because the house was unoccupied when the house was destroyed. One of the policy conditions,… Continue Reading

No bad faith for delay in appraisal where there were coverage issues — 10th Cir Oklahoma

Posted in Insurance Bad Faith
This is the second case involving Hayes Family Trust v. State Farm Fire & Casualty.  The first case, involving the appraisal process, is discussed here.  In this case, the policyholder claimed that State Farm acted in bad faith when it delayed the appraisal process because of coverage issues and when it failed to adequately investigate… Continue Reading

Insurer equitably estopped from denying coverage based on change of position on interrelated acts — 10th Circuit — NY law

Posted in Contractual Liability, Duty to Defend
In Brecek & Young Advisors v. Lloyds London, BYA told Lloyds about some claims (Wahl Arbitration) that fell within the 2006-2007 policy issued by Lloyds to BYA.  Lloyds first claimed that the Wahl Arbitration was related to another claim under a previous policy issued by Fireman’s Fund. Under the policy,“Interrelated Wrongful Acts” are “considered a… Continue Reading

Notice / Prejudice rule applied to claims made policy where notice was given within the date certain requirement — Federal Court, Colorado

Posted in Contractual Liability
In Childrens Hospital v. Lexington, Childrens (CHC) was sued for professional negligence.  It failed to provide notice to its insurer, Lexington, “as soon as practicable”, but gave notice within the “date certain” notice requirement of the claims-made policy.  As a result, the court determined it could use the notice prejudice rule to determine if the… Continue Reading

UM and Choice of law; law where the policy was issued applies — 8th Circuit North Dakota

Posted in Contractual Liability
In American Fire and Casualty Co. v. Hegel, Hegel’s decedent, Fetzer, was killed while delivering pizzas in an accident where Fetzer was not at fault.  The trial court found that North Dakota law applied (place of the accident) and that American Fire (Pizza company’s insurance company) owed UM.  The Eighth Circuit reversed.  North Dakota choice… Continue Reading

Criminal Acts exclusion did not apply to negligent conduct even if the conduct leads to a criminal conviction — Missouri

Posted in Contractual Liability, Insurance Bad Faith
In Pitt v. Leonberger, the Missouri Court of Appeals ruled that the criminal conduct exclusion did not apply. Leonberger, a school bus driver, struck and killed Pitts’ son.  The insurer, Missouri United School Insurance Council (MUSIC), accepted liability and even hired an attorney to represent Leonberger when a criminal charge of negligent homicide was filed against… Continue Reading

Mid-Continent off the hook on claim against bankrupt policyholder — 5th Circuit

Posted in Contractual Liability, Duty to Defend
In Kipp Flores Architects v. Mid-Continent Casualty Co.,  Hallmark (Mid-Continent’s policyholder) had a license to build one home per KFA blueprints, but ended up building hundreds, and not paying KFA for its plans.  After KFA sued for copyright infringement, 2 Hallmark entities filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy, stating there would be no money to distribute… Continue Reading

Fireworks explosion was one occurrence, affirming summary judgment — 4th Circuit, Pennsylvania law

Posted in Contractual Liability
Liability policy limits are usually based on occurrences, with a new limit applied to each occurrence and an annual limit on top of that.  (This may not apply in claims made policies  which are usually issued to professionals) As a result, insurance companies are often litigating whether an incident is one or multiple occurrences.  For… Continue Reading

E and O insurer had no duty to defend Realtor in claims arising after the sale — 7th Circuit, Illinois

Posted in Duty to Defend
In Madison Mutual Insurance Co v. Diamond State Insurance Co., the policyholder, Favre was sued by her neighbors, the Dribbens for harassment, intimidation and interference with their rights.  The Dribbens had purchased their property through Favre, a realtor, and had sued when they discovered the lake on the development had not been properly permitted.  After… Continue Reading

No Underinsured Motorist Coverage Where Tortfeasor Policy Limits Exceed Insured’s Policy Limits; Missouri (8th Circuit)

Posted in Contractual Liability, New Case
AMCO Ins. Co. v. Williams, arose from a fatal car crash. The insured’s estate sought underinsured (UIM) motorist coverage after recovering the tortfeasor’s policy limits. The claim was denied. The insured sought summary judgment establishing coverage. The insurer claimed there was no coverage because the tortfeasor’s vehicle was not underinsured. The insured said the policy… Continue Reading

Construction defect is not an “occurrence” or “accident” that triggers covered “property damage” within the meaning of a CGL policy – 7th Circuit, Illinois

Posted in Contractual Liability, Duty to Defend
In  Allied Prop. & Cas. Ins. Co. v. Metro N. Condo. Ass’n., Allied’s policyholder insured improperly installed windows on Metro’s property. Metro sued the insured for breach of the implied warranty of habitability. Metro and the insured entered into a settlement agreement assigning Metro the right to the insured’s insurance proceeds. Allied sought a declaratory… Continue Reading

Summary judgment on governmental immunity properly denied where City did not provide proof of no insurance — Arkansas

Posted in immunity
In City of Little Rock v. Yang, Yang sued the City for mishandling a 911 call.  City claimed immunity. But City did not offer evidence it had no insurance.  Governmental immunity is only available under Arkansas law if there is no insurance.  Also, if the claim exceeds the insurance limits, there is immunity.  The denial… Continue Reading

No coverage under builders risk policy for damage to the existing structure — 10th Circuit Colorado

Posted in Contractual Liability, Duty to Defend, Insurance Bad Faith
In Gerald H. Phipps, Inc. v. Travelers Property Casualty, the Tenth Circuit affirmed summary judgment to Travelers Property Casualty on a builders’ risk policy.  The policy covered the builder’s work on the property, not the property itself.  So, when water damaged the property while roof work was being performed by the policyholder, Phipps, there was… Continue Reading

No coverage for contaminated water claim at mobile home park, 8th Circuit, Missouri

Posted in Duty to Defend
In Williams v. Employers Mutual Casualty Co., the issue was insurance coverage for claims for contaminated drinking water at a mobile home park. There was no coverage for the claims because the insurance policies’ pollution exclusions excluded coverage for “‘[b]odily injury’ or ‘property damage’ arising out of the actual, alleged or threatened discharge, dispersal, seepage,… Continue Reading

Explosion Excluded from Coverage by Pollution Endorsement – 8th Circuit, North Dakota

Posted in Duty to Defend
Hiland Partners GP Holdings, L.L.C. v. Nat. Union Fire Ins. Co. of Pittsburgh, Pa. arose from an insurance coverage dispute over a processing facility condensate explosion. The insurer claimed the explosion was excluded per the policy’s pollutants endorsement. The endorsement defined pollutants as “any solid, liquid, gaseous, or thermal irritant or contaminant” and excluded coverage… Continue Reading

Third Party Has Standing to Claim Benefits –Missouri

Posted in Contractual Liability
In Blankenship v. Old Missouri Insurance Company, the Missouri Court of Appeals reversed summary judgment for the insurance company, and found that a third party beneficiary had standing to bring a direct action against the insurance company.  The plaintiff was a farm worker, claiming entitlement to medical payments (med pay) coverage and liability coverage under… Continue Reading
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